Originally Posted by pek64
As someone with severe food allergies, I can tell you it's not fun to be the guest, either.
I didn't ask anyone to accommodate my intolerances, after they reached a certain level. I brought my own food. But that caused it's own problems, as hosts were insulted, and insisted they had, or could have, accommodated my needs. No amount of explaining how I wanted to keep the visit enjoyable for the host as well as myself made a difference. I stopped accepting invitations for meals, eventually. It makes for a quiet holidays!
I was just going to bring this up!
I never ask anyone to accommodate me. I generally just eat before I go to dinner and choose what I can. However, that doesn't keep me from being backed into a corner! My uber-sensitive MIL asked me once (in her strange statement-question fashion which I find difficult) "Oh, you don't like the apple crisp???". I hadn't served myself any dessert because the apple crisp being served had oats in it, and I am severely allergic. I had been happily drinking my coffee with cream and sugar, but suddenly this question. I answered that I couldn't eat it because of the oats, which made her feel bad. She is forever trying to accommodate people, everyone, no matter what. I couldn't answer that I simply wasn't hungry for dessert, which would have been entirely out of character for me that no one would believe it!
This is just one minor instance. I simply cannot forgo so much of the food being offered without someone noticing and asking. Then I have to answer and risk making them feel bad for not asking me beforehand. I generally only attend family dinners. Any other parties I go to are too big for anyone to notice anything, and if I want to enjoy dinner with one other family, I invite them over to my house.
In general, when people know about my allergies and ask me what I want, I tell them not to worry about accommodating me because it seems to make them happy to not have to change their ideas about what they wanted to serve. But then the reality of my not being able to choose freely makes them seem embarrassed and regretful. ::sigh::
The biggest annoyance for me is that my sisters think I'm being silly for not eating those foods, just because I did a few years ago. I couldn't possibly be allergic if I'm not blowing up like a purple balloon, covered in Mt. Everest-size welts, or doubling over in pain, I guess. Apparently, there is no middle ground, in their opinion. Won't kill you this minute? Then eat it!